This miniature species from Madagascar is new to 365 days of Orchids and is a first flowering seedling grown as a house plant. Aerangis fastuosa means ‘the magnificent aerangis’ refering to the very large flowers for the very small plant – the rosette is just 7cm across. As you can just see in the side on photo, the flower has a very long spur that contains the nectar. This feature is shared with most Aerangis and is an adaption for pollination by long tongued hawk moths.
The species is endemic to Madagascar and is found as a twig epiphyte in evergreen forest from 1000 to 1500m altitude. The plant shown is growing in my dining room 1m back from a large east facing window where it experiences good light but no direct sunlight. In Africa we have found a number of smaller aerangis species growing in deep shade and this habit makes them well suited to indoor culture. The thermostat on our heating is set at 18C which seems to suit this species perfectly. The p[lant is growing in course bark and is watered once of twice a week with rainwater (and added weak feed). The small coffee cup has holes drilled in its base for drainage.